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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mix tapes

I have always known children are noisy.  Screaming, fighting, even talking...they are just loud little creatures.  How many times a day do I say, "okay...shhhhhhhhhh".  It's actually part of my hourly vocabulary.  When they are asleep or away, the sounds are deafening.  The quiet is so loud, it's hard for me to enjoy sometimes.  Honestly.  I am someone who just can't be content with the gifts, eh?  But it's true.  Quiet in my house means something's going on...if they are awake and it's that sound of nothing, that is a five star alarm.  It means someone is painting on the walls with my lipstick or holding the dog hostage or on a search and seize mission in my room.  But there are sounds that will remain in my mind forever too...we forget the screaming, we dismiss the crying in our memories and we selectively edit out the Target tantrums but there are the sounds we hope to remember always. 

The peculiar light tap step my son does coming down the stairs in the morning...I recognize him by the sounds of his feet hitting the stairs in pattern.  The deep breathing my little girl does when she sleeps in the car.  It's an inhale and exhale dance that belongs only to her.  The way my Ava talks to herself and reads out loud at night using character voices when she's sure she's her only captive audience.  Even the singing my oldest daughter does when she is plugged into her itouch and doesn't realize her singalong concert is loud enough for us all to enjoy.  The way my son answers questions to the children's shows and smiles in pride when he's right.  The loving way my daughter soothes my son when he's upset and the way she sends him on snack missions by coaching him with what to say to me to gain said food.  The gasping and giggling when I'm reading a favorite story and the slurping and smacking from a well designed ice cream sundae.  The botched up lyrics of Old McDonald...listening to my daughter talk to ants on the pavement, coaching them back to the grass.  The sighs of my son when he's calm.

It's the sounds of my home...the hit list of the Smith house - carefully edited.  The songs I can play over and over in my mind for when they fade out of memory...the sounds I hope to never let go of.

The eternal mix tape.

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